San Juan, PR (SportsNetwork.com) - Juwan Staten scored 23 points and West Virginia stayed unbeaten with a 78-68 upset of No. 17 Connecticut in the finals of the Puerto Rico Tip-Off.
Jonathan Holton and Daxter Miles Jr. scored 10 points apiece for WVU (5-0), which became the first team to take down the defending National Champs this season. The Mountaineers beat George Mason and Boston College to reach the championship in San Juan.
Turnovers and 3-point shooting plagued UConn (3-1), which had won nine straight games dating back to last season. Freshman Daniel Hamilton had eight of the 19 Huskies turnovers, and they shot just 3-for-17 from behind the arc as a team.
Ryan Boatright scored 17 points and Hamilton had 15 with 11 boards in the setback.
Holton converted a pair of three-point plays in the first 67 seconds of the game. West Virginia's full-court press caused problems for UConn early on, as four early turnovers led to the Huskies' 12-5 deficit.
UConn narrowed the gap by scoring seven of nine points midway through the period. Boatright's first basket of the game made it 22-20 at 8:57.
Then, the Huskies went cold and WVU capitalized. Devin Williams started an 8-0 swing with a layup from Jaysean Paige and Paige capped it with a trey from the left wing. Amida Brimah's alley-oop slam ended a scoreless drought for the Huskies, but Holton scored four in a row after that and the Mountaineers led by 12.
West Virginia led 47-32 at halftime.
Boatright's three-point play highlighted a 7-0 flurry by UConn early in the second half, but WVU withstood with push and led by at least six the rest of the way.
It was eight when with 8:11 left when Staten drove right on Boatright and put a lethal fake on the UConn star, sending him flying out of bounds. Staten sank a short fade-away jumper to restore West Virginia's double-digit lead.
Staten earned Tournament MVP honors after averaging 16.3 points over three games.
The Mountaineers made their second championship in Puerto Rico in five years. They lost to Minnesota in 2010 ... The win snapped WVU's 16-game losing streak against ranked opponents away from home ... Connecticut guard Omar Calhoun and forward Rakim Lubin were suspended for the game.